JeffH - Question on cutters
The impact of removing the jib stay on a multiple jib sloop or a cutter will greatly depend on the specific design of the boat in question. In most cases the impact is negligible as the staysail adds little in the way of performance and when used with a genoa adds little toward balance. There may be staying issues with the removal of the stay but in most cases the masts on cutters are sturdy enough to be sailed without the jibstay in place.
The only disadvantage that I can think of would be on boats with the headstay tacked to the end of the bowsprit; I would have serious concerns about supporting the entire rig loads at the end of a bowsprit. Also if the boat was designed to have its storm jib floan from the jibstay, I would be concerned about balance in heavy going.